MIAMI – Dwyane Wade's final in the American Airins Arena – and possibly the last game of his Hall of Fame career – began with a bang
The Wade has been honored by Miami Heat for 14 seasons in the league, honoring Wade with a pregame ceremony and a video tribute told by a combination of family members and eminent personalities from his legendary career.
"Man, you'll make me cry before this game," Wade said after the video with a laugh. "Man, I love you guys."
"I'm grateful for this moment. I'm thankful for the entire season. "
Dwyane Wade had grace and courage and changed the sports landscape in South Florida and beyond, writes Dan Le Batard.
Wade standing next to his eldest son Zaire Then he thanked each of his teammates this season for his name including those who have since been cut or traded.
"Thank you for dancing with me this year," said Wade, "Thank you for your patience this year. Thank you for all your love and for having my back this year.
"I have some brothers who will always be my brothers, I love you, boys."
Wade put his feelings on the field, scoring Miami a score of 30 points when the Sixers defeated 122-99. The only negative for Miami was that Detroit's victory over Memphis was out of the playoff race.
The tribute video kicked off with Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, who was Wades head coach for nearly ten years and whose first season as a full-time NBA assistant defeated Wade with the rookie season. He then switched to Shaquille O'Neal, who reported the first act of Wade's career, and reported on the championship they had won together in 2006.
From there, it moved to the second act, told by LeBron James covering both Big 3 times where Heat won two titles and four NBA Finals reached four years and Wade's departure to the Chicago Bulls in the summer of 2015.
"Pressure like this could have hindered you," James said about the challenges these heat teams faced, "but instead he cured you." To strengthen you as a player, as a man and as a leader.
"Then you reached the summit of the mountain twice more.Different case, same conclusion.
" In your second act, your arrivals were considered as one of the most respected athletes on earth, and the departure to your home you
The last act was then told by three people: Wade's wife, actress Gabrielle Union, Udonis Haslem, his longtime team-mate, and Pat Riley, who either trained or led the heat for Wade's entire career  "We cheered, we cried, we sang your name all over the city and up to the rafters," said Union. "It was more than a reunion, it was a revival of the role you wanted to play – from flash to fatherhood. "
" And now you take the stage one last time, we welcome you, "said Haslem," as the player who has fallen down seven times and stood eight. " "Because whatever stories we have," Riley said, "know that this city will always be proud to repeat your name on its back." 19659004] "Because this is Wade County and will be forever . "
The video was then cut on Zaire Wade, who had gone all alone to the AmericanAirlines Arena – imitating some of his father's moves at first – tweeter jumpers to a pump fake – before moving slowly up the steps of the bowl to one Microphone went where he sat and introduced his father.
When the lights came on, Zaire stood in the center court where his father was standing. Then he went to greet him and addressed him to the crowd.
When the video was playing, Wade's eyes rarely let the screens over them, other than scanning the crowd a few times. He moved and stretched, but his eyes stayed over him as the video played.
Shortly thereafter, after Wade's speech to the crowd, he received a comprehensive introduction by longtime Heat Michael Baiamonte, spokesman for the public address, as announced by the last player on the grid.
Spoelstra had declined to say if Wade would start before the game, but it would have been shocking if he had not made his first start of the season in what might be his last game in this building.
After spending a moment with Union and his little daughter at Center Court and after a prelude video told by all of his teammates, Wade went around the court and summoned the crowd to their feet.
And then, at the first game of the game, he rolled into the alley to open it, much to the delight of the hometown fans.
Wade first scored eight points-quarter points for the heat to jump to an early 34-20 lead. Throughout the game, the Heat Wade continued to pay tribute by playing short tribute videos every timeout.
The first came from another Chicago citizen, former President Barack Obama, who described Wade as a colleague of Windy City praising locals for his success.
"Whenever you were crushed, you showed us how to get up," Obama said. "They showed Chicago spirit and you made us proud."
Dwyane Wade exchanges jerseys with Jimmy Butler, takes a team photo with the Heat and exchanges with his son Zaire Wade.
At the next timeout, Wades' other son, Zion, had a message for his father.
"Well, after all that sweet stuff, you're not losing your last home game," he said, much to the delight of the local crowd.
During the time after the first quarter, there was also a John Legend song that related Wade childhood stories.